Gone are the days of meeting your soul mate in person or even through strategically set up profiles on dating websites. Now all you have to do is log on to Tinder through Facebook and scan the pictures of potential dating matches.
As the pictures of your potential matches in your general area pop up on the screen, you make the decision to swipe left and decline or swipe right to hope for a match and start up a conversation.
On campus, many students are trying out this new way of looking for potential relationships. Some are looking for dates, and there have been rumors of new, even lasting, relationships that have started on Tinder. Several Wellesley students have described it as an interesting way of talking to new people and seeing what they say, as opposed to, say, meeting on blind dates in person.
A junior at Wellesley, who wished to remain anonymous described her primary reasons for using her Tinder profile.
“First of all, what my friends and I use Tinder for the most is trolling or pranking each other,” she said. “We do this by giving each other’s Snapchats out in our ‘about me’ sections. Mine always includes a note like, ‘snap me something sexy ;).’ I would say I get, on average, two Snaps a day from random guys. After one of us has been particularly active on Tinder, we’ll probably receive more. Sometimes they’re naked pictures. It’s pretty gross but also pretty hilarious.”
She continued by acknowledging that the app could be useful for purposes other than trolling.
“Sometimes I actually use Tinder seriously,” she said. “Last year, I was unimpressed with the selection of boys at Block Party, so I encouraged one [from Tinder] to come because he mentioned he was planning on it. We hooked up in a car parked outside of Campus Po! But he was boring so I never contacted him again.”
And most recently, her encounter with the app led her to a man in his 30s from Harvard Business School trying to plan a mixer with her group of friends. She went on to note, “It’s really weird that a guy who is, like, 30 wants to mix with a bunch of girls in their early twenties. No, now … that sounds totally normal and is pretty much exactly what Tinder is.”
A sophomore who also wished to remain anonymous recalled a particularly humorous story from her experience with the app.
“I had just gotten out of a long-distance relationship with my high school boyfriend, and I had decided that I was ready to try dating again. So I get on to Tinder, and I do a bunch of research,” she said.
She continued to give some tips. “You want well-lit photographs with some sort of interest; a bio should be short and sweet, but give some viable topics of conversation and you should be very unforgiving when sorting because with the way Tinder works is if you are interested in men, there is generally a surplus of men who are interested in women.” she said. She then began her story. After talking holding several lackluster conversations with guys on Tinder, she started talking to an interesting Harvard senior.
“He texts back lightning-fast, using correct grammar and punctuation. I learn that he sings a cappella and is a vegetarian. I’m definitely interested, and after talking for a week or so, I mention that one of my favorite places in Boston is Veggie Galaxy. He asks if I would like to go for lunch one day and I accept,” she said.
After lunch, she and her date walked along Massachusetts Avenue from Veggie Galaxy in Central Square to the Harvard campus. She remembers the slow, relaxed pace they took, even choosing to walk by a river.
“And then I start peeing — on the first date — in public,” she said.
The Tinder date took a turn from then on.
“So there I am, unable to really process the absolute betrayal of my bladder. After the longest pause, I blurt: ‘I think I peed my pants.’”
She went on to describe how her date reacted to this: He paused and asked what he should do, which is when she, out of sheer embarrassment, asked him to leave.
But luckily, the incident did not deter her Tinder romance. In fact, the two continued the see each other until his graduation.
“Moral of the story: There are some really nice human beings on Tinder — you just have to pee on them first,” she concluded.
— Additional reporting by Broti Gupta ’16, Features